On Tuesday, July 17, the Metropolitan King County Council’s Transportation, Economy and Environment Committee will discuss and may act on Proposed Ordinance 2012-0225, approving the routing and stop locations for the RapidRide E and F Lines. When these RapidRide services start rolling in Fall 2013, the E Line will connect Shoreline to downtown Seattle and the F Line will connect Burien, SeaTac, Tukwila, and Renton.
The committee meeting will start at 9:30 a.m. in the King County Council Chambers on the 10th floor of the King County Courthouse (516 Third Avenue in Seattle). Members of the public are welcome to attend and provide public testimony. To request a language interpreter or accommodations for persons with disabilities, please contact Paul Carlson, Council staff, at (206) 296-1673 by this Friday. You may also submit comments to the King County Council email address for this topic at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alternatively, you can watch committee proceedings online at: http://www.kingcounty.gov/kctv.aspx.
The committee is expected to refer the ordinance to the County Council for consideration and a final decision in late July or mid-August.
Learn more about the project on our Metro Matters blog.
The announcement of the line F proposal is very strange. 1st of all route 140 is not a busy route to become a rapid ride. Another oddity is that Tukwila light rail to Renton section has a lot of duplications by other bus routes and has no benefit for anyone in Renton because there is a very little reason to go from Renton TC to Tukwila Sounder or Tukwila Light Rail because there is nothing there and no one transfers to go north like this. If you want to go north into Seattle there are plenty of buses 102, 101, 143, 167 etc. these routes can get you to Seattle faster than your travel time to the light rail in Tukwila. Even if you want to go to the airport like this, you still have a much faster option: a non-stop ride on 560 between Downtown Renton and the Airport. This proposal also bypasses some pretty dense neighborhoods and major regional destinations that are currently underserved by transit like Valley Medical and Benson Hill, as well as Renton City Hall and Renton’s Boeing plant that will add about 1000 jobs next year and more on the way. So why is 140 picked as a rapid ride route is beyond any logical reasoning… i don’t get it at all, there must be something else at play. Maybe city officials in Tukwila and Renton want a pretty bus, kind of like Seattle’s street car in SLU. It’s pretty but useless for commuters. I hope KC planners and the council-members will rethink this proposal and put the money into corridors that need more demand in Renton area. Did you know that currently you can’t even go from Highlands to the Valley Medical. A much better candidate for the rapid ride is the 240 corrdor extended south to Valley Medical Center. Valley Medical, Renton City Hall, Boeing, all give free or discounted bus passes, but there is no reliable bus service to use! and this new line F, aka 140 will not serve those destinations.
Wow… line F will do nothing but clog up Renton with huge empty buses. I never needed to travel to Burien from Renton TC, and even if I have to for some weird reason, I could use an express route 560 already. I was hoping for some direct service from Benson Hill to Bellevue or Seattle, and then i read that this new service will replace route 140. what?! That route is never even crowded. I can’t even travel from Benson Hill to the north end of Renton without a miserable transfer in Renton TC ughh. And now there will be even more buses to Burien? Ok, well, you will see a lot of empty buses line F then. And I will never travel so far west just to transfer to a light rail in Tukwila for a Seattle commute. 161 will get me to Seattle way faster and without any transfers in Downtown Renton. This new line looks like another waste of our tax dollars.
Line F is not worth it. There are so many duplicating 140 already. The line may have some benefit between Burien and Southcenter, but not between Southcenter and Renton. Anyone with a basic knowledge of geography will not commute between Tukwila Sounder station or Tukwila light rail and Renton TC. Those stations can not be the end of the trip since there is nothing there. They can only be used as a transfer to Seattle and the Airport. However, they are so off course, the light rail stations is way waaay west. Besides, 560 already travels non stop between Downtown Renton and the Airport, and 101, 102 and 143 travel direct to and from Seattle in less time than it will take to travel just to and from the Tukwila Light Rail station.
Instead King County should use these funds to get rid of transfers in Downtown Renton for north-south corridors. At least extend 240, 105, 101 to the Valley Medical Center, an employer that provides bus passes for its employees. You can’t even get anywhere from the VMC by bus accept to the same dead old Downtown Renton and the Southcenter with buses running once an hour until early evening. That bus pass program sounds like a waste of funds already, and now more waste of funds to make 140 look nice. Spend funds on improving service and not making a route that no one uses pretty!
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